‘REASSEMBLE’ BY BRIAN DONNELLY

by Ariadna Zierold

brian donnelly, toronto, kaws, pop art, portraiture, faces, figurative, mixed media, colorful, reassemble, upper playground

Toronto based Brian Donnelly (previously featured here) is a pop artist and designer. His work includes repeated use of a cast of figurative characters and motifs. Donnelly expands upon previous work to explore portraiture as a record of loss as opposed to eternal likeness. Accordingly, each piece sees Donnelly painting figures with exquisite technique before taking a figurative hammer, blow torch, rope or rake to the canvas.

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Currently on view at Stephanie Chefas Projects in Portland, Oregon is Donnelly’s fantastic new solo exhibition, “Reassemble.”

MELTED FACES BY BRIAN DONNELLY

by Ariadna Zierold

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Toronto based artist Brian Donnelly (previously featured here) uses turpentine and hand sanitizer to melt the faces of his portraits into rainbow rivers. Inspired by an interest in human identity and vulnerability, Donnelly paints from real life, portraying features of his subjects with realistic precision. These portraits show all kinds of distortions, unsettling mutilations that deny any trace of socially accepted beauty or fragmented facial features that reveal human limitations and speak of vulnerability.

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DISTORTED PORTRAITS BY BRIAN DONNELLY

by Ariadna Zierold

brian donnelly, portrait, painting, the citrus report

The recent works of Toronto-based visual artist Brian Donnelly are focused on portraiture. These portraits show all kinds of distortions, unsettling mutilations that deny any trace of socially accepted beauty or fragmented facial features that reveal human limitations and speak of vulnerability.

brian donnelly, portrait, painting, the citrus report

The hair and sometimes the eyes, mostly remaining part of the composition to increase the work’s expressiveness and visual impact through confronting or connecting with the viewer in striking ways, are the very few recognizable elements still left untouched by what feels like a spontaneous, rapid and irreparable erosion.

brian donnelly, portrait, painting, the citrus report

This powerful impression of imperfection and incompleteness captures gestures of despair or fear, if physically possible, depending on the extent of their distortion, the depicted subjects are hopelessly screaming, while we are silently witnessing a slaughter scene that it is too late to prevent.

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